Welcome to Growbox Hill

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Sunday, April 5, 2015

Happy Easter!

Ok, so... we don't actually celebrate Easter around here, lol. No egg hunts and baskets full of sugar.

But we do celebrate spring. Spring bulbs are popping up everywhere- and today I saw my first clump of roadside daffodils in full bloom. It was a wonderful and heartening sight.

Yesterday I called in a ditch fire that was encroaching on a neighbors property- I'm guessing it was likely a cigarette flicked out the window that started dry grass and leaves on fire. There was a goodly swath of blackened roadside this morning- including the edge of those folks large wood cutting area. Whew, glad I called it in before it got any worse than it was.

So... a few days ago when it was all super nice out, I turned under and cleaned up one of the beds- and got a couple rows each of peas and spinach seeded in. It was kind of a PITA, but hopefully it will be well worth it. And I got the lasagne bed built for the yellow beans- hooray! One full bale of flaked straw made for a nice bed that I used the very last of the horse manure on. That makes three beds now at the top of veggie row. The three garlic beds look wonderful and springing up right nicely. Sometime during the week I'm hoping to get out and pick up a few more straw bales for mulching. I also built one straw bale bed- I'm hoping to grow some squash in it. If I'm lucky, and am able to pick up a few more bales, I will dress those up to grow up some melons and cukes this year.

I'm really hoping the neighbors offer to dump all their horse manure for us again this year.

I'm starting to seriously think I should skip the Queensland blue squash in favor of buttercup so we have more "personal" kind of sized squashes for the winter. Having big ass squashes is great, but we really do tend to utilize the more personal sized ones instead. I make a lot of stuffed squash.

Speaking of which.. tonights Easter dinner is stuffed squash. Stuffed acorn squash, filled with quinoa, corn, rehydrated mushrooms and sweet peppers, and onions.. all sauteed in rendered smoked ham fat and seasoned with plenty of garlic. I'm doing smashed potatoes with them. Smashed potatoes have all the delish crispy outside with all the smooth creamy inside. I think everyone on the planet with access to potatoes should have this item in their recipe list.

And nicely enough with the spring weather... and butter being on sale... Soon it will be time to make up a few pounds of chive butter, frigging yummy! Fall chive butter is good... but spring chive butter is for sure better. We drank up the bottle of chive and peppercorn vodka over the course of a year- so I will be making another bottle of that too. And we are running low on chive oil, so guess what? I will be making chive oil too. Only thing we haven't run out on yet is dried chives- and I really do need to use those up soon.

I got a lot of sweet potatoes on sale recently- so of course I dehydrated up a quart of those. 6 full trays on the dehydrator packs down to 1 quart jar- and that's from 3-4 pounds worth of fresh taters. Still have a bunch of fresh ones on the counter, so it will be a decision to either dry those too or eat them fresh, hmmmm.... I do still have a lot of celery I need to do something with, so maybe I will dry up a batch of that instead.
While I was at it, I picked up a couple of organic sweet potatoes to try to grow out my own slips from. We were really bummed last year when the local nursery had crappy slips and decided not to sell them. Good for them for not selling inferior product- but boo for us who wanted sweet taters, lol. So starting slips seems easy enough. Just get a small tater, slice in half, and put the halves cut side down in a container of water- seems kind of like growing out avocado pits. Why use organic taters? Because regular commercial ones are usually sprayed with a growth inhibitor to prevent them from sprouting while in storage- while organic ones usually are not sprayed, and so actually will grow slips.

So... lots more seed been started, and lots sprouted... need to finish potting up the tomatoes. Got tons to do in the garden... and darn it all, work keeps scheduling me with stupid ass hour long meetings on what would normally be my days off. These meetings are often not actually an hour long, and I end up blowing an hour and a half with getting ready for and traveling to and from them.. and ugh. Right in the middle of the day too, so it extra fucks the day up. But after next week that should stop, so hopefully I will be back onto a more normal kind of schedule again so I can crank up getting stuff done outside.

But now it's time to smash some potatoes and get them ready for the oven... Happy Easter everyone!!

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